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#2143382 - 09/03/13 11:12 AM Re: Jazz Study Group 2: Advanced Players [Re: jazzwee]
jjo Online   content
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Registered: 04/09/08
Posts: 632
Loc: Chicago
Jazzwee: I think I understand what you're saying.
I think, however, I like the approach of the jazz camp pianist a bit more.
He had you think of the target chord and what harmonies can you add to approach that chord.
He suggested the "big 3" for approaching any chord: V (the dominant a fight above), tritone sub (the dominant a half step above), or the diminished a half step below.
If the piece is slow enough, you can also approach the approach chord using the Big 3.

I think the concept gets to a similar place as what you're suggesting, I'm just more comfortable with this approach for whatever reason.

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#2143428 - 09/03/13 12:52 PM Re: Jazz Study Group 2: Advanced Players [Re: jazzwee]
jazzwee Online   content
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Registered: 04/25/07
Posts: 7086
Loc: So. California
jjo, what I'm talking about from BH has a different sound. Now mind you, it's new to me too. But the difference in sound is primarily the #5 which sounds like it wants to resolve descending. in contrast the half-step lower diminished feels like ascending. So different leading tone effect. The closest to it would be like playing V7b9.

This is but one approach though. I learned many but in the heat of a solo, it's really hard to think about all this because they're not necessarily something you'd think about as "melodic". So it requires some intellectualization while playing. I haven't come around to combining the two.

If I sit at home and look at a progression, I'd come up with all these little alternative harmonic ideas but unless it's a tune I practiced over and over, it's hard for it to come out.
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#2143505 - 09/03/13 03:49 PM Re: Jazz Study Group 2: Advanced Players [Re: jazzwee]
knotty Offline
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Registered: 03/01/07
Posts: 2993
Loc: Bethesda, MD (Washington D.C)


I think this article is junk.

If I sum is up :
"Many educators tell you to do ... I say this is wrong, look at all this evidence"

I can find plenty of people who do not use a metronome and have definitely very bad time. Should I write an article on how "not using a metronome the proper way" will practically destroy your ability to ever swing,

I think this is a kind of "marketing" article. The type where you say that everyone is wrong, so take lessons with me and you'll get the truth.

I would take it all this stuff with a grain of salt. Perhaps he has a beautiful method for teaching how to swing, and I'd like to hear it. But the "proof" in this article is pretty useless to me.

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#2143575 - 09/03/13 06:34 PM Re: Jazz Study Group 2: Advanced Players [Re: jazzwee]
jazzwee Online   content
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Loc: So. California
Of course Knotty, one has to respect who the author is. This is Mike Longo, not some run of the mill Jazz Pianist. And Mike Longo's specialty is RHYTHM.

And if I read it right, I'm interpreting it as "Use a Metronome until you build the the skills for keeping time" then move on. So obviously, if you can't keep time yet and play evenly, then you're probably not ready for his method.

From even our discussions here, I somewhat understand what he's talking about. Swing is about controlled positioning of articulation on a beat. And if done right, it's not going to land on the 2 or the 4. So playing a metronome at 2 & 4 doesn't tell you specifically where you are supposed to land.

This is why I personally would rather play with a drum track than a metronome.

When I use a metronome, I have to imagine the triplet feel. A drummer marks it very specifically though so there's the difference.
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#2143692 - 09/03/13 10:12 PM Re: Jazz Study Group 2: Advanced Players [Re: jazzwee]
knotty Offline
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Registered: 03/01/07
Posts: 2993
Loc: Bethesda, MD (Washington D.C)
Well you know what I think about drum tracks. I think they are the worst of all options. He uses the term soulless, I think drum tracks are exactly that.

If you're going to play with something, then I'd choose playing along to Charlie Parker or Coltrane or something.

I used to be able to find a nice Victor Wooten video with tons of metronome ideas. The concept of keeping time and then move on is kind of unreal in my view. There's time, and then there's time. I mean take any top jazz pianist, and compare his time to Keith's.
Know what I mean? :-)

I still think this is a marketing article, without much substance.

But that doesn't mean he's wrong. Maybe he's got a beautiful method out there. That's what I'd prefer hearing. Not what not to do, but what to do. To each his own you know, we all find our own stuff.

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#2143753 - 09/03/13 11:34 PM Re: Jazz Study Group 2: Advanced Players [Re: knotty]
KlinkKlonk Offline
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Registered: 05/19/09
Posts: 365
Originally Posted By: knotty


I think this article is junk.

If I sum is up :
"Many educators tell you to do ... I say this is wrong, look at all this evidence"

I can find plenty of people who do not use a metronome and have definitely very bad time. Should I write an article on how "not using a metronome the proper way" will practically destroy your ability to ever swing,

I think this is a kind of "marketing" article. The type where you say that everyone is wrong, so take lessons with me and you'll get the truth.

I would take it all this stuff with a grain of salt. Perhaps he has a beautiful method for teaching how to swing, and I'd like to hear it. But the "proof" in this article is pretty useless to me.


that text was tautology ad naseum, but if it worked for him, it must work for everyone else right?

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#2143796 - 09/04/13 12:34 AM Re: Jazz Study Group 2: Advanced Players [Re: jazzwee]
jazzwee Online   content
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Registered: 04/25/07
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Loc: So. California
Knots, I'm talking about real drum tracks. Like the Carmine recordings. Or even playing with a record. Certainly I find that superior to a metronome.

Aebeorsold -- the problem is that some of them have really complex rhythms so they're not the best for me.

Anyway, not that I disagree with practicing on a metronome itself. I don't. But I find it's a different thing playing with the band where the pulse may keep changing, vs. a metronome. If you're into yourself keeping your own independent time, you may still be out of phase with a band, who because they're human may have changed the rhythm slightly. So playing "evenly" vs. "keeping time" may be two separate issues.

Still, Mike Longo is highly respected, particularly in his approach to rhythms (which he worked on with Dizzy). He may see things a little differently to us because he's subdividing beats much further than we can imagine. So I wouldn't be surprised if there's something deeper in his comments that we just can't absorb at this moment.
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#2143845 - 09/04/13 04:16 AM Re: Jazz Study Group 2: Advanced Players [Re: jazzwee]
Mark Polishook Offline
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Registered: 11/29/12
Posts: 662
Loc: Leicester, UK
A specific skill to which playing along with a metronome is helpful (as one way to do it) and playing along with a recording (as another way to do it) is building a mental image of what's being played.

I first came across that term in Abby Whiteside's book "On Piano Playing."

A review

http://www.modernpianoplaying.com/resources/great_literature.htm

says "Abby Whiteside's contribution is enormous, Here holistic approach to technique and music making calls for matching a centrally controlled physical continuity to an intense heard mapping of the basic undulating impetus of music."

The idea of the mental image is you "really" want to hear what you're playing. Hear it so strongly that it's palpable.

The "traditional" way of building a mental image is to image the sound you're trying to produce. And then imagine it with more detail. And more detail. I've heard that Dizzy Gillespie said a big part of his technique was that he shouted out the lines he was playing in his head - as he played them on the trumpet. By shouting them in his head he was insuring that he really HEARD them.


You can use a metronome to build a mental image if you really listen to what you're playing as you play along with it. So the metronome in this is just a measure that accompanies the mental image - what you're hearing in you're head. Of course the metronome carries on in rigid metronome time. But the idea sn't to focus on rigid metronome time for it's own sake. It's just to use the metronome as a measure against which to hear whatever it is you're hearing in your head. So in that sense it doesn't matter what style you're playing or anything. The metronome is just some background noise to help you concentrate on what you're hearing in your head.

Meditation with a mantra or focusing on your breathing works in about that same way.

A better way way to develop a mental image - I think - is to play along with a recording of whatever you're working on. So Transcribe (the software) let's you do this and much more. Because you can slow the recording down to some manageable speed but at the same time maintain original pitch. Slowing something down like that let's you really hear the nuances of whatever it is you're listening to.

The best part s if you wear headphones that slow version of whatever you're listening to get pumped directly into your ears. So what you hear in your head as you play the solo on your instrument gets complemented with what's coming in through headphones. Meaning you're reinforcing the mental image heard in your head with the sound coming to your ears through headphones


About advice from Mike Longo and or any great player: You have to use common sense and evaluate what you see and hear. Great players are not always great teachers. Great teachers are not always great players. The ability to do something well doesn't always translate into the ability to describe it well or to sequence it into useful steps for a learner.


To the metronome, as Dave Frank pointed out, Lennie Tristano was fond of the mentronome. He's even got a great recording (actually a classic recording) - Turkish Mambo - where he plays along with it.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6oEiuUU6Ek4

He's overdubbed stuff on that recording too. He messed with a lot of heads then this stuff was first heard.

A bassist friend who I haven't seen in eons studied with Dave Holland who told him to practice with the metronome on all four beats. Charlie Banacos told me to never use a metronome. I once had a chance to practice with Mike Stern for a few days while he was in Boston playing with Miles Davis. We played Giant Steps for long periods with the metronome clicking away on 2 and 4. Mike Stern studied with Charlie Banacos for 30 years or so.

There is much conflicting opinion about the metronome and whether or not it should be used.

Anyway, if you haven't played along with Transcribe as I'm suggesting - and I'm writing this out to everyone who's following this discussion but not commenting - you know who yo are! - well, it's something that's well worth trying.

Here's a blog post I wrote about the idea of the mental image.

http://www.polishookstudio.com/2013/08/towards-mental-image-of-music-part-1.html

... maybe it's obvious but the idea of a mental image is only useful to the extent that you use it. But that's the same for any practice aid or technique - ncluding the metronome. It's how you use it that counts. Not if you use it.

Hope this helps ..


Edited by Mark Polishook (09/04/13 04:19 AM)

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#2144173 - 09/04/13 05:52 PM Re: Jazz Study Group 2: Advanced Players [Re: jazzwee]
Bobpickle Offline

Gold Supporter until July 10  2014


Registered: 05/24/12
Posts: 1383
Loc: Cameron Park, California
Sorry to barge in, but I hoped some of you more advanced players wouldn't mind indulging a question or two of mine. I'm currently enrolled in two jazz classes that involve playing and/or learning to play various things on the piano. This is coupled with private lessons that have a somewhat more classical focus and so as a result, each week, I'm faced with learning - to a reasonable standard - a laundry list of voicings (both generic and tune-specific), a non-classical tune or two, and a selection or two from the classical repertoire. My question to you all is how, how often, and how much do you practice such things until they're subconsciously learned? Let's assume I'll break the material down into groups to facilitate some routine of "chunking" (so as not to foolishly try and learn everything at once). Oh, and so the question isn't quite so vague, three examples of things to learn are:
  • ii9-V9(13)-I9(13) voice-leading pattern in all 12 keys
  • Voicing handout for 12-bar blues in F
  • Jazz/blues tune (Doxy) with 3 note voicings (3,7,color tone) in LH & melody in RH


Earlier this year, jazzwee made a post on his blog titled, "Filing Skills into your Subconscious Storage," but when it was suggested to practice things 5 times perfectly [daily], it was ambiguous as to how big the chunks might best be; see here: http://jazzwee-blog.blogspot.com.es/2013/02/filing-skills-into-your-subconscious.html

-a classical pianist/pedagogue I admire describes the process as programming one's "automatic pilot" (read here); "You cannot play 'intuitively' unless you have the 'intuition' in the first place."

-On Marian McPartland's first season of Piano Jazz (R.I.P.), Bill Evans said, "It's better to practice 1 tune for 24 hours than 24 tunes in an hour," and because there are so many things that go into learning to play just a single tune well, maybe he was saying the exact same thing - that it's better to focus meticulously on several little things (trying to absorb them into your subconscious mind) for a period of time than to try and take on everything at once.

So how do you all make use of these principles in your practicing? Also, if you were me and had my to-do list to practice, how would you go about it with all know and have learned?

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#2144402 - 09/05/13 01:14 AM Re: Jazz Study Group 2: Advanced Players [Re: jazzwee]
The Wind Offline
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Registered: 05/28/13
Posts: 468
Bobpickle, hi and welcome. That's alot of things to be working on!! I never bought the "practice in all 12 keys" mentality. In reality there's only 4-5 keys that are commonly used.

Better to do this. Play ONLY in 1 key for 1 month. For all jazz songs. You will have the 2-5-1 down solid if you do that. It is more the fingers knowing instinctively what shape the chord is.

Bill Evans was right. In that interview he also said he can't play in every key. No one will be calling out tunes in B, Gb... If you notice the fake books the keys seem to be C, F, Bb, Eb, G. Work on those first.

How long have you been playing piano and jazz for? It took me years to get it down, but I was in no rush.

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#2144494 - 09/05/13 08:25 AM Re: Jazz Study Group 2: Advanced Players [Re: jazzwee]
The Wind Offline
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Registered: 05/28/13
Posts: 468
hey guys, any advice on how to accompany singers on piano? In terms of playing above or below the melody line, comping styles and rhythm. I'm thinking standards and ballads.

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#2144522 - 09/05/13 09:38 AM Re: Jazz Study Group 2: Advanced Players [Re: jazzwee]
knotty Offline
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Registered: 03/01/07
Posts: 2993
Loc: Bethesda, MD (Washington D.C)
Bob,

These are good exercices. .

In general I agree with Wind about not practicing things in 12 keys. however the exercises given to you make sense. A some point pretty soon, you should know all the major 2-5-1s in all 12 keys. They simply come up in all keys.
Minor 2-5-1s in some of the odd keys are less frequent, like Ab- and Db- but they come up too.

So it's good to know your way around all the major and minor keys. You can tackle this one thing at a time though.

It's also good to know all your dominant chords. Playing the 5 is different from playing 2-5. And all dominant chords come up, so it's good to have at least one voicing for each ready.


For the rest, it really depends what your goals are. Are you looking to:
- PLay songs from leadsheets
- Improvise on tunes
- PLay with singers
- accompany yourself as a singer
- play some blues

If you say: my dream would be to play/sing like Ray Charles or Mose Allison, then it's different than if your goal is getting closer to Keith or Bud.

For example, there's no ear training in your practice, but myabe you are doing it as part of your classical stuff. All classical methods have ear training
There's no exercise on improv also, but maybe you're not interested in it.

You can start with the fun stuff right away, no reason to delay.

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#2145605 - 09/07/13 05:06 AM Re: Jazz Study Group 2: Advanced Players [Re: The Wind]
Bobpickle Offline

Gold Supporter until July 10  2014


Registered: 05/24/12
Posts: 1383
Loc: Cameron Park, California
Originally Posted By: The Wind
hey guys, any advice on how to accompany singers on piano? In terms of playing above or below the melody line, comping styles and rhythm. I'm thinking standards and ballads.


A few examples of standards and/or ballads off the top of my head from which to maybe try and pull some ideas.

Chick Corea and Bobby McFerrin - Autumn Leaves

Ella Fitzgerald - My Funny Valentine

Anything with Bebo Valdes (couldn't think of a slower piece to link).

It seems like while trying to do too much might steal spotlight, simultaneously doing too little would leave an audience starved for texture - you have to find that nice middle ground. I think good accompanying kind of reminds me of the polyphony of Bach's fugues - the interweaving melodic lines, while often displaced rhythmically to create interest, never come across as conflicting or out of place, but always supremely complementary. Several teachers of mine have said that fine accompanying is as much of an art as solo playing. Sorry I can't provide more specific advice.

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#2145612 - 09/07/13 05:40 AM Re: Jazz Study Group 2: Advanced Players [Re: knotty]
Bobpickle Offline

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Registered: 05/24/12
Posts: 1383
Loc: Cameron Park, California
Originally Posted By: The Wind
Bobpickle, hi and welcome. That's alot of things to be working on!! I never bought the "practice in all 12 keys" mentality. In reality there's only 4-5 keys that are commonly used.

Better to do this. Play ONLY in 1 key for 1 month. For all jazz songs. You will have the 2-5-1 down solid if you do that. It is more the fingers knowing instinctively what shape the chord is.

Bill Evans was right. In that interview he also said he can't play in every key. No one will be calling out tunes in B, Gb... If you notice the fake books the keys seem to be C, F, Bb, Eb, G. Work on those first.

How long have you been playing piano and jazz for? It took me years to get it down, but I was in no rush.


Hah, this makes sense, thanks. I'd stick to just a select few keys, but it's not really up to me when the material to learn is being provided in and for a formal classroom setting. Though that being said, other than voicing-leading patterns for ii-V-I progressions and what-not, I don't think the teacher would throw tunes to the class in exotic, unpragmatic keys.

And I've been playing for probably like two years now. While I'm not a complete beginner, I'm also not an intermediate player by any stretch.


Originally Posted By: knotty
Bob,

These are good exercices. .

In general I agree with Wind about not practicing things in 12 keys. however the exercises given to you make sense. A some point pretty soon, you should know all the major 2-5-1s in all 12 keys. They simply come up in all keys.
Minor 2-5-1s in some of the odd keys are less frequent, like Ab- and Db- but they come up too.

So it's good to know your way around all the major and minor keys. You can tackle this one thing at a time though.

It's also good to know all your dominant chords. Playing the 5 is different from playing 2-5. And all dominant chords come up, so it's good to have at least one voicing for each ready.


For the rest, it really depends what your goals are.


I'd say that I desire the ability to play and improvise in a bluesy style of jazz like Terrence Shider or Scott Bradlee. I view learning to play straight-ahead jazz as more of a means to an ends than a desired ends, not that the skill or style of playing isn't maybe a little coveted.

But I digress, as this really wasn't my intent. I simply wanted to try and learn what sort of practicing you all do and what sort of routine(s) you follow in order to best ingrain into the subconscious things like ii-V-I voicing patterns, new comping patterns, etc. so that when the time comes that you need to play them, you can do so with little-to-no thought or effort, allowing your conscious mind to focus on other things. Especially if you feel that how you practice now differs from when you started - and is maybe more effective and/or efficient - I'd find it interesting to read about.

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#2145754 - 09/07/13 12:37 PM Re: Jazz Study Group 2: Advanced Players [Re: jazzwee]
jazzwee Online   content
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Not sure it's accurate to say that there are only 5 or so common keys. Each tune modulates to so many that I don't know what keys don't get played much. Sure, many start in Eb, Ab, F, G, Db but if you do many complex tunes like I do (something my teacher always did), you're bound to hit every key.

And for good measure, playing Chick Corea tunes will embed B, A, and D.

My point is, I had to memorize all ii-V-I's early on. And then that had to be transformed to two handed voicings in all registers. There is no shortcut IMO. It has to be done. Since it might take a year to get this memorized completely, why delay?

Now having said that, I don't think there's a problem at all with working on particular tunes (like Autumn Leaves and ATTYA as we did in the other thread). This certainly has pedagogical value. The more key changes a tune has, the more more value it has for developing skills related to keeping up with the changes. Autumn Leaves in contrast has the simplicity of key to allow study of other approaches in playing over a single key.

So your question was, what's a Chunk? I think it should be a challenge that translates into repeatable (5 times) exercises. I think your brain will develop further if you think about random transitions from ii-V to ii-V. You've got to strain your brain to develop. If it's too easy nothing develops.

Specifically, I would do ii-V-I's doing circle of fifths. You probably can't finish this all in one sitting so I would practice over several keys each session. Like 4 keys. Maybe starting at a different point every day until you cycle through the whole thing.

Then switch to Chromatic ii-V-I's.

Then switch to playing leadsheets just to practice voicings.

Your hands need to do this automatically. You don't need to do it fast yet. That "speed" in switching chords can be reserved for your practice tunes like Autumn Leaves and ATTYA. But always work on the ii-V voicings until it's automatic. It takes awhile.
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#2145764 - 09/07/13 12:53 PM Re: Jazz Study Group 2: Advanced Players [Re: jazzwee]
jazzwee Online   content
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Registered: 04/25/07
Posts: 7086
Loc: So. California
Let me add another thought here. Many teachers start off with having you memorize rootless voicings. But what's bad is the mindless use of standard (9)(13) voicings without concern for alterations.

I went from a teacher that just had me memorize ii-V rootless without any understanding, to a teacher who says, NOW - play that with two hands in multiple registers. That really shook me up at the time since I was just playing the chords mechanically.

So part of one's practice should be to really be able to identify each important chord tone (1, 3, 5, 7) and then the extensions (9, 11, 13) by feel and in the hands and regardless of which register you're on. This is a project that shouldn't be delayed either.

Especially in common keys, you should be able to spot tones like b9, #5, #11 in either hand without having to think about it. To start having this skill, PAY CLOSE ATTENTION to what notes you are playing in each ii-V. Don't just do muscle memory. It will bite you in the butt later.

In the ATTYA thread, I showed how you do ii-V two handed voicings. That really makes you rethink the process and later on, when you're doing comping (which is 75%+ of a pianist's job), you will see that comping is just soloing with many notes at once (though slower).

Another story -- so I figured after all these years, I know my voicings. Then I went to another teacher just to see if I'm missing anything. He then asks me to play a D- quartal voicing ('So What' two-handed chords). No problem. Then he says, now do Eb. OK, I've played So What so no problem.

Then he says, now move it around diatonically. OK. Easy on white keys. NOW do it in Db-. In F-. In G-. WHOA!!! It showed me that I had not practiced it. It's something that would take a long time to do in all keys. And now I realize this is really important in comping. (won't explain the 'Why' now...).






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#2145913 - 09/07/13 05:49 PM Re: Jazz Study Group 2: Advanced Players [Re: jazzwee]
The Wind Offline
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Registered: 05/28/13
Posts: 468
hey wee... you are right that tunes modulate in so many keys. I was playing the ballad "I Fall in Love too easily".

Now it's in C major. But there's 2-5-1's in A-, D-, Emaj. I try to look at the entire song in one key and all those shifts as "detours", still in the same key.

For me I try to practice things that have relevance to songs.

If you want one song that will test you, try "Never Let Me Go". There's like 3 major keys and tons of dom7 shifts.

I've just found I learn best by focusing on one thing only and really drilling it, for weeks or months. Rather than try to tackle too many at once and I don't retain it.

Rootless voicings are another thing. I play solo piano more than with a bass, so I prefer to have that root there to emphasize the chord. Or play it cascading upwards like an arpeggio and hit the extension notes.

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#2145996 - 09/07/13 08:23 PM Re: Jazz Study Group 2: Advanced Players [Re: jazzwee]
jazzwee Online   content
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Registered: 04/25/07
Posts: 7086
Loc: So. California
That's why ATTYA is such a good tune to work on since it passes through so many keys. In fact, you could probably hit most keys with just a selected few tunes. How many keys in ATTYA? 7? On the top of my head -- Eb Ab Db C G E- E B F-. 7 Major and 2 Minor (though some are pretty quick). Not bad for one tune.

Giant Steps hits the rare ones like B, D, F#, E.

I too like to practice tunes in the context of a tune. The problem is that at some point, you will encounter the ones that are glossed over and you have to strengthen yourself in them. I'm thinking of keys like A. I cringe at the thought of being called to play A blues. So at some point, one needs to actually stretch. Maybe just play ATTYA half a step up!

BTW Wind, yeah for solo piano, it has to be two handed ROOTED voicings mostly, especially with a singer. So what do you play in the LH now? I'm not good at solo piano with a singer. That's a whole different style. Some rhythmic pulse has to be provided, especially on a swing tune. I've always done singers with a whole band.
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#2146309 - 09/08/13 12:22 PM Re: Jazz Study Group 2: Advanced Players [Re: jazzwee]
jjo Online   content
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Registered: 04/09/08
Posts: 632
Loc: Chicago
The piano player at the jazz camp I attends, as part of his every day practice routine, plays Giant Steps in all 12 keys. That'll keep you young!

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#2146392 - 09/08/13 02:27 PM Re: Jazz Study Group 2: Advanced Players [Re: jazzwee]
knotty Offline
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Registered: 03/01/07
Posts: 2993
Loc: Bethesda, MD (Washington D.C)
Bob,

It's quite important to find out for yourself the method that works. You'll constantly get contradictory advice and that's up to you to sort through it all.

My opinion is that you should always practice things with an immediate goal in mind. If you want to learn voicings, then just practice them !!
PLaying tunes in 12 keys is possibly not the best use of your time though.

From what I hear, you'd like to play bluesy arrangements. So start with a nice solid tune that will lend it self nicely to that style. Georgia on my mind is a good one. The nearness of you, Skylark. Good morning heartache. In fact, anything Billie Holiday sang is probably great. Time on my hands, touch of your lips. It goes on.
You pick one and you see how you can fit in whatever today's voicing is.
From here, you have 2 options.
1. Write down an arrangement, no matter how big or small. That will really force you take that stuff in very fast. Then at the end, you have a beautiful piece ready to go, and you've learned top of tricks on the way. That would be a Bill Evans type of approach. Where stuff is really worked out to perfection.
2. Just play the tune improvising it. This is probably a more gratifying immediate approach but it's a bit harder for stuff to sink in.

Any old tune can sound awesome. Just check out Chick Corea and Keith Jarrett for ultimate solo playing. You can often pick out one or 2 tricks. Then use it extensively in your own arrangement and that trick will quickly become in your pocket.

The issue with practicing 2-5-1s around circles and chromatic etc.. is that it just isn't very musical. You have to be kind to yourself. If you cannot play a particular voicing in all 12 keys, who cares? Really?
Anyway voicings work specifically in one key, they don't always transpose nicely to other keys.

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#2146510 - 09/08/13 05:22 PM Re: Jazz Study Group 2: Advanced Players [Re: jazzwee]
The Wind Offline
Full Member

Registered: 05/28/13
Posts: 468
Originally Posted By: jazzwee

BTW Wind, yeah for solo piano, it has to be two handed ROOTED voicings mostly, especially with a singer. So what do you play in the LH now?



hey wee, I normally don't play just with a singer either. I am used to a full band with drums/bass as well. I rely on them to give the rhythmic backing. Yeah I would do straightforward voicings with the root played, although not always as the bottom note.

It's a different mindset too because I am so used to playing the melody myself, and then I need to stay out of the way or range with them.

Forget Giant Steps, there's some tunes I refuse to play!!

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#2146548 - 09/08/13 06:07 PM Re: Jazz Study Group 2: Advanced Players [Re: jazzwee]
jazzwee Online   content
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Registered: 04/25/07
Posts: 7086
Loc: So. California
Yeah wind - it would be another study to learn solo piano with a singer. That would be another big project. Someday.

BTW - when dealing with singers, they just go bonkers on rootless voicings. Many get confused without a root so you have to play the melody notes for them and highlight the root.
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#2146549 - 09/08/13 06:08 PM Re: Jazz Study Group 2: Advanced Players [Re: jjo]
jazzwee Online   content
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/25/07
Posts: 7086
Loc: So. California
Originally Posted By: jjo
The piano player at the jazz camp I attends, as part of his every day practice routine, plays Giant Steps in all 12 keys. That'll keep you young!


Haven't tried Giant Steps in other keys but the current key is the HARDEST anyway smile So anything else has to be an improvement.
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#2146559 - 09/08/13 06:43 PM Re: Jazz Study Group 2: Advanced Players [Re: jazzwee]
The Wind Offline
Full Member

Registered: 05/28/13
Posts: 468
wee, yeah it's funny how some singers can't follow pianists at all. I had one ask me to play the melody along with her. She wasn't a jazz singer, but doing stuff for broadway shows. I tend to throw in alot of passing chords or tritone subs, stuff that would drive them crazy.

I like Herbie Hancock's approach with singers. His River album and last one doing pop were excellent.

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#2147077 - 09/09/13 04:46 PM Re: Jazz Study Group 2: Advanced Players [Re: jazzwee]
KlinkKlonk Offline
Full Member

Registered: 05/19/09
Posts: 365
I hate giant steps because of the phrase lenght and harmonic rythm. confuses me, that's the real hard thing with that tune if you ask me.

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#2147131 - 09/09/13 06:32 PM Re: Jazz Study Group 2: Advanced Players [Re: jazzwee]
jazzwee Online   content
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/25/07
Posts: 7086
Loc: So. California
Klink, Like everything else though, if you play it often enough, then it works out. I can play GS in a pretty relaxed manner now. I don't need to overfill it with notes. But I understand what you mean. If you think about it chord by chord, you don't really have much time to do anything. So after awhile, I hear it differently. It flows more slowly in my head harmonically (my ear gravitates to the common tones which don't change as fast).

Wind, some singers are a pain because they can't hear the harmony so they don't know how to sing the melody automatically. I've had gigs where they're forcing the tune in a different key. Train wreck! So now I'm very careful with singers. I get to pick them so from a dozen I use, I stick to a couple. I get the gigs because of the singers though so I have to sensitive to that. I can't play Giant Steps all night. smile
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#2147487 - 09/10/13 10:47 AM Re: Jazz Study Group 2: Advanced Players [Re: jazzwee]
knotty Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/01/07
Posts: 2993
Loc: Bethesda, MD (Washington D.C)
Originally Posted By: jazzwee
Originally Posted By: jjo
The piano player at the jazz camp I attends, as part of his every day practice routine, plays Giant Steps in all 12 keys. That'll keep you young!


Haven't tried Giant Steps in other keys but the current key is the HARDEST anyway smile So anything else has to be an improvement.


That got me thinking. What would be an easier key for Giant Steps?

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#2147689 - 09/10/13 03:46 PM Re: Jazz Study Group 2: Advanced Players [Re: jazzwee]
jazzwee Online   content
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/25/07
Posts: 7086
Loc: So. California
Actually, when you start transposing, it appears there's only one key that's not so bad and it's F. Other than that, every other key appears to have some difficult section -- for piano.

If you're a guitar player, maybe you won't care smile
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#2148109 - 09/11/13 09:48 AM Re: Jazz Study Group 2: Advanced Players [Re: jazzwee]
knotty Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/01/07
Posts: 2993
Loc: Bethesda, MD (Washington D.C)
I haven't tried in other keys, but I'm curious. Why would F be any easier than B?

>>If you're a guitar player, maybe you won't care smile
As you know, real pianists use the transpose button !!

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#2148390 - 09/11/13 06:17 PM Re: Jazz Study Group 2: Advanced Players [Re: jazzwee]
KlinkKlonk Offline
Full Member

Registered: 05/19/09
Posts: 365
maybe build a career around using the transpose button, the greatest enemy/friend of pianist since..1984 maybe?

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